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The Dresden Loving Couple and its copies: thoughts on iconography and authorship

digital The Dresden Loving Couple and its copies:
thoughts on iconography and authorship
Articolo
rivista ARTE LOMBARDA
fascicolo ARTE LOMBARDA - 2015 - 1-2
titolo The Dresden Loving Couple and its copies: thoughts on iconography and authorship
autore
editore Vita e Pensiero
formato Articolo | Pdf
online da 12-2015
issn 0004-3443 (stampa)
€ 6,00

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The so-called Loving Couple (oil tempera on poplar panel, 20.1 × 28.5 in (51 × 72,5 cm), Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister, Dresden, Gal-Nr. 221) is an Upper Italian painting from the first half of the 16th century. It is part of the permanent exhibition but seems to be less known than other works of this world-famous collection. The work is continually mentioned in art historical research since the late 19th century, but has never been thoroughly analysed until today. This paper shall provide an iconographic analysis as well as a reconsideration of the question of attribution. Appreciation and Interpretation of the content will take place by a description of the painting, which regards the great amount of details like the hat-jewel or the glove worn by the evidently rundown nobleman. On this foundation the question whether the Couple is a double portrait or a genre painting just «pretending» to be a portrait. This is done by typological comparisons with Upper Italian as well as Northern European depictions of married and loving couples. As a result of analysis and comparison the Couple is considered an Italian adaption of the Northern European theme of the Prodigal Son among the whores – a biblical episode especially popular in Early Modern Netherlandish print art. The iconographic and typological analysis is followed by the attribution of the Couple to Girolamo Romanino. The attribution is done by comparing the Couple with confirmed works by the master and by showing stylistic, iconographic and thematic matches. Lastly those copies of the Couple, which can be clearly identified, are compared with each other for the first time.

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